Who Are the 144,000

IAUA Third Elijah Message
IAUA End Time Ministry
Preparing for the End of Time
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Deep study of the Bible leads us by the influence of the Holy Spirit to see connections between ideas presented in the Bible. The words of the Bible alone may not explicitly make these connections. We must be engrossed in the study of the Word to see these connections. We must be obedient to following the commands of God to open ourselves to a greater influence of the Holy Spirit. We must be earnestly seeking in prayer the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
John 16:13

The guidance of the Holy Spirit leads us to see the connection between the great prophetic themes of the Bible. The Holy Spirit gives the understanding, which reveals the hints in the Bible for the timing and order of these themes as well as the connection between them. Many hints are seen by an understanding of the great patterns God uses in everything He does. Events, messages, and ideas repeat in different ways in different circumstances.

I will share in this study what the Holy Spirit has led me to see about the 144,000. When we are studying deeply to uncover the hidden things of God, we ask questions to focus our search for knowledge and understanding. Who are the 144,000? Where do they come from? How will we recognize them? What is their purpose?

I will share with you the hints in Bible I have seen about the 144,000 and some logical reasoning from these hints. Your understanding must be established by your own careful study. The Holy Spirit is your guide. The Holy Spirit works through direct impression, the words of the Bible, and the explanations from the shared studies of other individuals to impress your mind with truth.

You must do your personal work to grow these truths in your own heart. Simply reading or hearing the words of others will not grow truth in your heart. A simple reading of the words of the Bible is only a start to growing truth in your heart. The words of this book are only a start to direct you to a beginning understanding in your deeper study of the Bible.

Who are the 144,000?

There are only two mentions of the 144,000 in Revelation. In these verses, we see their sealing just before the final tribulation.

1 And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.
2 And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea,
3 Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.
4 And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.
Revelation 7:1-4
Here we see that the 144,000 are a special group who spread the truth without deceit (no guile), are without fault (obedient to all of God's law), and are not associated with fallen churches (defiled with women).
1 And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads.
2 And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps:
3 And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.
4 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.
5 And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.
Revelation 14:1-5

We see the 144,000 (144k) identified as the firstfruits. They are the first of a larger harvest, which comes after their sealing.

The 144k are a small number of the millions following the Three Angels' Message. These millions are the wheat and the tares growing together. Those who have not studied the Bible for truth will have a final opportunity after the 144k are sealed. Those who have studied the Bible and followed the Word of God by accepting the Messiah, keeping the Sabbath, and have heard the Third Elijah Message will have no excuse for not seeing and following.

From where do the 144,000 come?

The sealing of the 144k is a parallel event, one of God's repeating patterns, to the sealing of the disciples on Pentecost. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit with power occurs after preparation of the heart in receiving the doctrine of God. The disciples were prepared by John the Baptist and the teaching of the Messiah.

The 144k will be prepared by the outpouring of doctrine associated with the Elijah prophet as prophesied in Malachi 4:4-5. God joins honest and true individuals from all over the world into a band of disciples who respond to His calling. These disciples will follow the Lamb all the way when He leads them into all Truth.

The Elijah prophet will only provide the final touches in the gathering of the 144k in their final preparation. The 144k are in training right now under the direction of the Holy Spirit. They have been called by God and are already responding. They are being drawn into a deeper study and understanding of God's Truth.

The 144k already see the importance of the Elijah Message about the Law of Moses. They are already studying and are beginning to practice the truth. The Elijah prophet and the Elijah Message will put the final touch on the unity of the 144k in truth. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit in power at Pentecost seals the 144k.

Increasingly the Omega apostasy of denying the part of God's Law known as the Law of Moses is being pushed by the church. Though this teaching has been around from the beginning of the church it only reached prominence after the death of EGW and has now become a mainstream part of the doctrine of the church.

Many leaders are becoming more and more forceful in the hypocrisy of denying the Law of Moses in spite of the major doctrines of the church, which are a part of the Law of Moses and not the Ten Commandments. The prohibition against blood and fat championed by EGW is now ignored but the concepts of unclean flesh, tithing, bestiality, homosexuality, incest, fornication, and many other practices are not explicitly described in the Ten Commandments. They are clearly described and prohibited in the Law of Moses.

Those who are studying and embracing the Law of Moses, preparing to be a part of the 144k are causing a great shaking to come upon the church. Many leaders see the danger clearly and are fighting back to preserve the hypocrisy and apostasy which has become Adventist tradition. The church will be shaken to the core when the reformation of the Elijah Message sweeps the church.

How will we recognize the 144,00?

The end of time begins with the sealing of the 144k. Preparation for the end of time means being prepared for the return of the Messiah. Those who are first prepared will be part of the 144k.

Revelation refers to the 144k as Israelites from each of the twelve tribes. An Israelite is a child of Abraham. Paul stated quite clearly those who practice faith as did Abraham are his true children.

7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
Galatians 3:7

Paul did not speak this only by his own understanding for our Saviour said the same thing.

39 They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham.
John 8:39

Therefore, based on Revelation, Galatians, and our Saviour the 144k will be recognized because they follow all of God's Law without question, excuse, or doubt. Many of the same characteristics of the Third Elijah will be seen in the 144k. They will stick out like a sore thumb because they do not follow the traditions of the organized churches. They will practice a primitive godliness, which is a return to the practices of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel.

Notwithstanding the widespread declension of faith and piety, there are true followers of Christ in these churches. Before the final visitation of God's judgments upon the earth, there will be, among the people of the Lord, such a revival of primitive godliness as has not been witnessed since apostolic times. The Spirit and power of God will be poured out upon his children. At that time many will separate themselves from those churches in which the love of this world has supplanted love for God and his Word. Many, both of ministers and people, will gladly accept those great truths which God has caused to be proclaimed at this time, to prepare a people for the Lord's second coming. The enemy of souls desires to hinder this work; and before the time for such a movement shall come, he will endeavor to prevent it, by introducing a counterfeit. In those churches which he can bring under his deceptive power, he will make it appear that God's special blessing is poured out; there will be manifest what is thought to be great religious interest. Multitudes will exult that God is working marvelously for them, when the work is that of another spirit. Under a religious guise, Satan will seek to extend his influence over the Christian world. {GC88 464.1} {GC 464.1}

The restoration of the Law of God is clearly described as the source of this revival.

"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly. . . . But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper." [PS. 1:1-3.] It is only as the law of God is restored to its rightful position that there can be a revival of primitive faith and godliness among his professed people. "Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls." [JER. 6:16.] {GC88 478.3} {GC 478.3}

What is the purpose of the 144,000?

The purpose of the 144k after Pentecost is the same as it was for the disciples. They are to go forth after their training and sealing by the Holy Spirit to witness to the whole world one last time.

8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
Acts 1:8
When their work is finished it will be the end.
14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Matthew 24:14

The Great Multitude

The results of the work of the 144k are described after their sealing is described.

9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;
10 And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.
11 And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God,
12 Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.
13 And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?
14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
15 Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them.
16 They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.
17 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.
Revelation 7:9-17

The great multitude is described as appearing in white robes and these same people are described as coming out of great tribulation. The tribulation begins after the sealing of the 144k therefore these are the converts of the work of the 144k. Only the 144k are described as the first fruits, which are sealed, therefore most of the others in the church of the Three Angels Message were sealed to destruction. Some who had not had the opportunity to learn the truth of the Law of Moses will have their opportunity after Pentecost. For those who had studied and rejected the Law of Moses it is too late.

EGW quotes on the 144,00

So far, I have presented information on the 144k based on the Bible and the results of understanding by study and prayer on the subject. Here I present what Ellen has to say on the subject, which is unique to her revelation from God. In this quote, she emphasizes the importance of the 144k and encourages us all to a greater intensity and focus to be a part of the 144k.

Let us strive with all the power that God has given us to be among the hundred and forty-four thousand. And let us do all that we can to help others to gain heaven. We are to have an intense interest in Christ Jesus; for he is our Saviour. He came to this world to be tempted in all points as we are, to prove to the universe that in this world of sin human beings can live lives that God will approve. {RH, March 9, 1905 par. 4}

In this quote, she warns of useless controversy and mentions a question of her day involving the 144k.

Christ says that there will be those in the church who will present fables and suppositions, when God has given grand, elevating, ennobling truths which should ever be kept in the treasure house of the mind. When men pick up this theory and that theory, when they are curious to know something it is not necessary for them to know, God is not leading them. It is not His plan that His people shall present something which they have to suppose, which is not taught in the Word. It is not His will that they shall get into controversy over questions which will not help them spiritually, such as, Who is to compose the hundred and forty-four thousand? This those who are the elect of God will in a short time know without question. --Manuscript 26, 1901 {1SM 174.3}

The work of the 144k is shown in the closing work of the church linked to Ezekiel 9 when the sealing work begins at the church.

The true people of God, who have the spirit of the work of the Lord and the salvation of souls at heart, will ever view sin in its real, sinful character. They will always be on the side of faithful and plain dealing with sins which easily beset the people of God. Especially in the closing work for the church, in the sealing time of the one hundred and forty-four thousand, who are to stand without fault before the throne of God, will they feel most deeply the wrongs of God's professed people. This is forcibly set forth by the prophet's illustration of the last work under the figure of the men, each having a slaughter weapon in his hand. One man among them was clothed with linen, with a writer's inkhorn by his side. "And the Lord said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for the abominations that be done in the midst thereof. {RH, September 23, 1873 par. 4} {RH, June 8, 1886 par. 1}

Most spectacular of all is her first vision where the sealing of the 144,000 is again linked to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. I believe this will be at a third fulfillment of Pentecost. The voice of God proclaims the day and hour of the Second coming.

Soon we heard the voice of God like many waters, which gave us the day and hour of Jesus' coming. The living saints, 144,000 in number, knew and understood the voice, while the wicked thought it was thunder and an earthquake. When God spoke the time, He poured upon us the Holy Ghost, and our faces began to light up and shine with the glory of God, as Moses' did when he came down from Mount Sinai. {EW 14.1}

The 144,000 were all sealed and perfectly united. On their foreheads was written, God, New Jerusalem, and a glorious star containing Jesus' new name. At our happy, holy state the wicked were enraged, and would rush violently up to lay hands on us to thrust us into prison, when we would stretch forth the hand in the name of the Lord, and they would fall helpless to the ground. Then it was that the synagogue of Satan knew that God had loved us who could wash one another's feet and salute the brethren with a holy kiss, and they worshiped at our feet. {EW 15.1} 1882

This quote along with others indicates the 144k are living saints, who witness the Second Coming. They receive honor in heaven for their end-time work in spreading truth.

Then Jesus' silver trumpet sounded, as He descended on the cloud, wrapped in flames of fire. He gazed on the graves of the sleeping saints, then raised His eyes and hands to heaven, and cried, "Awake! awake! awake! ye that sleep in the dust, and arise." Then there was a mighty earthquake. The graves opened, and the dead came up clothed with immortality. The 144,000 shouted, "Alleluia!" as they recognized their friends who had been torn from them by death, and in the same moment we were changed and caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air. {EW 16.1}

We all entered the cloud together, and were seven days ascending to the sea of glass, when Jesus brought the crowns, and with His own right hand placed them on our heads. He gave us harps of gold and palms of victory. Here on the sea of glass the 144,000 stood in a perfect square. Some of them had very bright crowns, others not so bright. Some crowns appeared heavy with stars, while others had but few. All were perfectly satisfied with their crowns. And they were all clothed with a glorious white mantle from their shoulders to their feet. Angels were all about us as we marched over the sea of glass to the gate of the city. Jesus raised His mighty, glorious arm, laid hold of the pearly gate, swung it back on its glittering hinges, and said to us, "You have washed your robes in My blood, stood stiffly for My truth, enter in." We all marched in and felt that we had a perfect right in the city. {EW 16.2}

This is a quote where she mentions, the importance of the 144k following the Lamb here on earth before following the Lamb in heaven. Lovingly following Him in willing obedience to all of God's Law is a major contrast to those who look for excuses to avoid following the parts of God's Law they despise.

One of the marked features in the representation of the 144,000 is that in their mouth there was found no guile. The Lord has said, "Blessed is the man . . . in whose spirit there is no guile." They profess to be children of God, and are represented as following the Lamb whithersoever He goeth. They are prefigured before us as standing on Mount Zion, girt for holy service, clothed in white linen, which is the righteousness of the saints. But all who follow the Lamb in heaven will first have followed Him on earth, in trustful, loving, willing obedience, followed Him not fretfully and capriciously, but confidently, truthfully, as the flock follows the shepherd. {3SM 424.2}

Here she identifies that the 144k have a special purpose to present the truth to the world and face great opposition.

Why were they [the 144,000] so specially singled out? Because they had to stand with a wonderful truth right before the whole world, and receive their opposition, and while receiving this opposition they were to remember that they were sons and daughters of God, that they must have Christ formed within them the hope of glory. They were ever keeping in view the great and blessed hope that is before them. What is it? It is an eternal weight of glory. Nothing could surpass it. {1SAT 72.3}

When you study the 1888 Loud Cry message, she indicates it would have been the end time message, which would have included the 144k and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. This would also have included the Third Elijah Message with the presentation of the Law of Moses. This indicates what the real disagreement was. Then, as today, people do not want to hear what they do not want to practice. This truth will not be rejected again.

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Revised 2015-08-21